Earlier this semester, my Understanding Writing class was assigned to write literacy autobiographies. Basically, we could write about whatever we wanted as long as we discussed our own personal experiences as writers. We were challenged to approach this assignment differently than we usually approach academic writing assignments, but other than that, the requirements were pretty limited. We went through our rough drafts in small groups and then, after being given a week to revise those rough drafts (where I took the opportunity to rewrite my entire paper) we posted our final drafts on Google Drive for everyone in the class to read and respond to.
I chose to write my literacy autobiography with a lot more freedom than usual. In fact, the final draft looks a lot more like one of my blog posts than any formal writing assignment I’ve ever written. With that freedom came more of my personality and more of my personal experiences. I got really personal in my literacy autobiography. In their comments on Google Drive, a couple of my classmates commended me for how courageous I was to write so openly about these personal aspects of my life. They called me brave to touch on these subjects at all.
As much as I appreciate the positive responses I got about my literacy autobiography, I don’t see myself as brave for writing what I did. I was just being honest. To write my literacy autobiography without those personal aspects of my story would not have been honest and in my opinion, that wouldn’t have been worthwhile. In the past few months, I’ve grown to realize how important it is to be honest with myself. I feel more confident and in control of my own life when I admit things to myself, even if doing that isn’t an easy task. So, what seemed to be this great big act of bravery to others in my class felt like a completely normal thing for me to do. Not just normal, but right. My literacy autobiography couldn’t have been written in any other way.
That being said, I don’t know if I’m ready to write this blog post. If I’m honest with myself (as I’m trying to be) I don’t think I’ll ever be ready to write what I’m about to write with the full intention of then publishing it on the World Wide Web. I’ve been thinking about it for the majority of the afternoon though, so I know I have to. Better today than never. Yesterday, I would have viewed this blog post as “strictly journal material.” Off limits to anyone but myself; I’d spend a few hours frantically writing all this down in a journal and it would never see the light of day again. Today though, I feel like I need to write this. What good is it if I keep this closed up in a journal anyhow?
It’s amazing how a person can change from day to day, right?
So, without further ado (gee that was a long introduction):
I’m in love. With someone. Another human being. This person knows this. How? Well, I told them.
It’s not going to work out in any conceivable future. Am I okay with this? I’m getting there (to being okay). Am I going to spend my time mourning this? Psh, hell no. I have better things to do with my time.
I think I’m just the type of person who love comes to naturally. I don’t know if I’m good at it, per se, but it’s just something that happens whether I ask for it or not. Part of me has always striven to see the good in people and well, when you see a lot of that in one person, love just kind of comes naturally. Well, for me at least, as I’ve found out.
Where I am right now: I’m happy with my life and myself and I’m glad to be in love, even if it wont amount to anything. It’s weird for me, because in my past experience, I was never wholly satisfied with myself while in love. I now know that that love was a twisted and selfish love. This love though, is different. I don’t feel like I need anything from it. It’s just there and it’s special because it exists. I feel very fortunate to have this feeling, even if it wont amount to anything, because I know that many people never do. I can tell you the exact moment I realized this love was a thing (I was watching The Perks of Being a Wallflower at an outdoor movie viewing venue in the NoMa neighborhood of D.C.). I can also tell you the exact moment that the like (as in, I like this person more than a friend) that was a precursor to the love became a thing (about eleven months prior to the movie viewing experience). I don’t know what’s going to happen in the future. I don’t know who I will cross paths with or where I will go. I’m not betting on anything with this feeling because there’s nothing to bet on. It just is. I’ve talked to a few of my friends about this and they have pretty explicitly told me to move on. Um…sorry, love doesn’t work like that. I’m not trying to cling onto these feelings in any way, shape, or form. At the same time, I can’t simply throw these feelings out the window at my leisure because, even if I tried, feelings aren’t the types of things that can just be abandoned at one’s leisure. Anyone who says differently is kidding themselves.
Love is tricky. It’s messy. It doesn’t always work out. Everything about love takes time. That’s part of its nature.
About a month ago, I was really struggling with this because all I wanted to do was let go of this issue. I wanted to have a good cry so I could shed all these feelings to move forward. I tried my darnedest to cry, but the tears wouldn’t come. I got frustrated that they wouldn’t come, which made me want to cry even more. I eventually realized that I couldn’t cry because there was nothing to let go of. Furthermore, I don’t have to shed these feelings to move forward; I can and will move forward regardless of their existence…that’s what I’m doing right now. This thing called love just happens sometimes and we can’t do a whole lot about it (I sure as hell wasn’t planning on falling in love this time around, but it just kind of happened). I can’t just let go of my feelings because my feelings are a part of me. Maybe one day they’ll go away, but who’s to say when that will be.
So, I’m in love with someone (and please don’t question me here. I know what I feel, people).
It’s pretty cool to be in love with someone. It really is. Granted, it would be cooler if the love was reciprocated, but such is life. The important thing here is that feeling this strongly about another human being is incredibly special. This feeling is one that I will never take for granted.
To quote The Rolling Stones, “You can’t always get what you want/ but you if you try sometime you find/you get what you need.” In an ideal world, this whole love thing would work out just the way I want it to and we’d live happily ever after; this, however, is not an ideal world.The experience, though, has helped me grow in more ways than one and I’m beginning to believe that the personal growth I am gaining from this is what I really need right now.
And so, this is my take on love in a nutshell. I don’t claim to know everything about love (and hell, I don’t want to…that would be an awful big responsibility to have!) but this is what I’ve got.
One last note: Out of respect for the person I have been referring to throughout this conversation and in order to maintain my own dignity, I have purposefully refrained from going into detail about the relationship I have with them. Please don’t ask. You wont get any answers. That’s kind of beside the point, anyways, but I did feel the need to make this clear.